With a lilting, crystalline voice that enchants, jarring lyrics and captivating rhythms of her native East Africa, Sudanese-American singer Alsarah returns to Alwan in the debut of The Nubatones in a project covering original material written by Alsarah, followed by Swahili songs of Zanzibar and Kenya with the return of The Sounds of Taraab.
Inspired by the pentatonic scale and western soul music, and struck by a collective love for Nubian music, Alsarah and the Nubatones revisit Nubian songs of return, as well as popular songs from northern Sudan and southern Egypt, from the 1970s until today. While linguistically there has been a rapid arabization of that region, its retention of its musical culture has been steadfast.
The Sounds of Taraab endeavor to familiarize audiences with the exciting and profound music amd dance from Africa’s Eastern coast. A little over 100 years ago, the Sultan of Zanzibar sent his court musicians abroad to study…They returned, and taraab ws born. This genre, found in the towns of coastal Eastern Africa, is a hybrid of Arabic, Indian, and African styles, with the poignant songs of love and longing sung in the melodious language of Kiswahili. Zanzibar style taraab is basically Egyptian song and modal practice, and the predilection for Arabic instruments. Mombasa style known for its highly syncopated rythmn, with accordion, oud and violin backed up by guitar and modern drum kit. The songs of Dar Es Salaam that may be right out of an Indian movie, and tablas are the popular form of percussion there in that cosmopolitan city. In addition, you may hear varied instruments from anywhere, such as Japanese biwa or Latin American bongos, demonstrating the ecclectic nature of this music.http://www.myspace.com/soundsoftaraab